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Temporary Guardianship of Related Minor Child


Legal Disclaimer: The following is basic legal information, provided as a public service by Wyoming’s lawyers. The information provided is not a substitute for speaking to an attorney.  Only an attorney can give you legal advice regarding your specific situation. Click here for help finding a lawyer


What is a temporary guardianship for educational, medical care and dental care purposes?

Wyoming has a court process in place to give certain family caregivers limited rights to make educational, medical and dental care decisions for a child under 18 years of age as the child’s temporary guardian.

When is this type of temporary guardianship appropriate?

This limited type of temporary guardianship can be used when someone other than a child’s natural parent is primarily caring for a child under 18 years of age and needs to be able to take care of the educational and health care needs of the child. 

Who can apply for this type of temporary guardianship of a child?

In order to apply for temporary guardianship for educational, medical care and dental care purposes, the person applying must meet the following requirements:

  1. Be at least 18 years of age,
  2. Have primary physical custody of the child, and
  3. Be related to the child as the child’s stepparent, grandparent, great-grandparent, sibling, stepsibling, half sibling, uncle or aunt.

What rights does this type of temporary guardian have?

A temporary guardian for educational, medical care and dental care purposes is given the right to make certain decisions for a child.  Those decisions include the right to:

  • Enroll the child in school,
  • Meet with the child’s teachers and make educational decisions for the child,
  • Make appointments for the child and take the child to the doctor or dentist,
  • Receive information about the child from the child’s doctor or dentist, and
  • Make medical and dental care decisions for the child.

How long does a temporary guardianship last?

A temporary guardianship for educational, medical care and dental care is usually limited to not more than one year.

Can I request to be appointed as the permanent guardian for educational, medical care and dental care?

There is currently no provision under the law to become a permanent guardian for educational, medical care and dental care under this simplified procedure.  However, a temporary guardian for educational, medical care and dental care may request to continue that temporary guardianship if there is a continuing need.   The temporary guardianship can be continued by re-petitioning the court.

Caregivers that have a continuing need to care for the child may want to speak to an a lawyer about other options, such as seeking permanent guardianship and conservatorship or adoption of the child. Click here for help finding a lawyer.

Do I need a lawyer to file for temporary guardianship for educational, medical care and dental care purposes?

You are not required to have a lawyer to file for temporary guardianship.  If you do not use a lawyer, it is important to understand that persons that represent themselves are held to the same standards as lawyers.  Therefore, it is important that you make sure you are prepared before attempting to file any court case. If you decide that you cannot handle the case on your own, or want to try to find a lawyer who can help you, click here.

How do I file for temporary guardianship for educational, medical care and dental care purposes?

There are online forms with instructions for filing at: http://assets.aarp.org/www.aarp.org_/cs/misc/wyyouarenotaloneguide.pdf.  (This link will take you to the Wyoming AARP website.)

If you have questions or do not understand the forms, you may want to seek the assistance of a lawyer.  Judges, court employees and clerks are not allowed to assist you in completing your forms or give you legal advice, so it is important that if you need assistance that you seek legal advice from a lawyer. 

Where can I find the law relating to temporary guardianship for educational, medical care and dental care purposes?

The laws about this type of temporary guardianship are found in Wyoming Statutes 3-2-301 through 3-2-303.